One of the coolest things about this trip with VCH is that we get the full spectrum of missions work. We’ve done plenty of evangalism, outreaches into remote neighborhoods, held crusades, built relationships with the people of El Salvador, and yesterday we got to experience the final piece of true missions work, intensive labor. Yesterday we woke up and headed off on another 2 hour bus ride (we’re getting used to those) to a new neighborhood. On the way there we had a guitar and had a great time of worship. It really built up our spirit, and good thing it did because our bodies were about to be tested. There we found a dirt floor and a pile of sand and bags of cement. As soon as we stepped off the bus we were put to work. We shoveled the pile of sand into wheelbarrels and buckets and took them from the road down a little path to the church. It was so cool to see everyone working so hard, and I was so proud of everyone’s servant attitude! After shoveling all that sand we began to mix the cement. The floor that we were covering was underground and the only way to get down there was a not-so-sturdy wooden ladder. So we had a team underground and a team up top passing us the buckets of cement down. It actually was a pretty good system except for that one bucket we dropped on top of a girl’s head from another team! Because of all our hardwork we finished around 4pm and headed back home. When we got back to the hotel we all stood out front and took a group photo to show how dirty we were. Then they cleaned us off with a broom. We cleaned up and all met downstairs for some more pizza hut. During dinner we had a great time of fellowship and got to share with each other some funny stories and things that happened to us on the trip. After worship there was a great presense of the Holy Spirit and we had some great words from God. So we finished the night of and got some sleep for our day of fun at the beach. So now that the ministering is done here are the grand totals, over this week we have ministered to 8,176 people and saw 2,008 come to salvation. Yes, 2,008 isn’t our God cool how he does stuff like that! Well thanks everyone for the prayers we are all glad to be coming home, but watch out we are charged up and ready to bring our ministry back to the States!

Sunday!

July 21, 2008

Yesterday was awesome!! We got to sleep in a little which is always nice! Then we set off for church. We had a little bus trouble so by the time we got to church they only had one worship song left. David Blanchard preached in English and had a translator so we could actually understand the sermon. And we’re all glad we could because it was amazing! After the sermon they started playing worship music and thats when it got a little nuts. Their music is so upbeat and you can’t help but dance. We were told that woman weren’t allowed to dance in church so we just held it back. But as soon as we saw other woman running to the front to dance we were all up dancing our hearts off for God. After sweating out a few gallons of water David did an altar call and had us pray over everyone for the baptism of the Holy Spirit. As soon as we put our hands on the people they would fall out in the spirit! All of us got to experience God’s power flowing through us and I know we were all so humbled to be used by God. In all the excitement I didn’t notcie David Blanchard coming towards me, but as soon as I saw him it was too late! He layed hands on me and I was out! This continued for about 20 minutes and then we were shuffled out of the church to go have lunch. Their church services last all day, but we had more ministry to do. For lunch we had the BEST pupusa’s and chicken! After we were all fueled up we headed out to downtown to do more dramas. We set up in a very busy area of town and started the dramas and then had altar calls. We continued to do this 4 more times in different areas of town. And by the end of the day we had performed for 861 people and saw 349 of them come to salvation! Not bad for a days ministry! Now we are all thinking what would happen if we tried this in America. I think we are all pretty hyped up from the amazing victories. Well after a long day of work we celebrated with Pizza Hut! Today we are heading out on another 2 hour bus ride to go do construction. We’re not exactly sure what we’re going to be building but we know it has to do with concrete!

So after a 2 hours bus ride we arrived at the beach where is was pouring down rain.  We got onto 2 boats and some of us had the bright idea that it would be fun to sit in the front where there is no covering…that was not a good idea. After a 20 min boat ride we arrived at the Island soaking wet. We treked through the village with all our heavy supplies what seemed like miles to the church. It was probably a half mile at the most. SInce it was still raining we had to set some of our literature out to dry. Our morning then started with a children’s crusade. Again we went out to invite the children from the village and we had a great turn out. We played a couple of games that the kids went crazy for, then we sang a few worship songs. We followed that up by our dramas and finally an altar call. It was amazing to see the children’s reaction to the Gospel. After the kids left we cleaned up and had some lunch. The pastor’s daughter made us the most famous El Salvadorian meal, pupusas. They are pretty much tortillas filled with refried beans and topped with something kind of like cole slaw, but they were delicious and we were all asking for seconds. After lunch we decided to play a game of telephone, it was especially fun considering we had english and spanish speakers playing. After lunch we set up for the adult night crusade. After the worship set we performed one of our dramas and it was followed by some amazing preaching by Bob Gabelman. After his preaching they did an altar call for anyone who wanted more power through the Holy Spirit. Our team went up and prayed for everyone who answered the call and we all saw and felt God moving in the people’s lives. Kathie was praying for one woman and the woman just fell out in the spirit. It was awesome to see God work in such a powerful way through our team, and very humbling at the same time. After the altar call we were giving away flip flops and hot dogs to everyone who attended. This is where it got ugly. The people became ruthless and desperate to get the flip flops. They were shoving each other to get to the front and even pushing me and pinching me to try and give them flip flops first. Finally when they got so badly out of control we told them to make a line and we weren’t giving out anymore until they settled down. We finally handed out all of our sandals and headed for the boats to go home. The boat ride home was absolutely breath taking. It was nothing but us, the water, darkness and God. Then all of a sudden we looked down and we saw glowing algae springing up for the boat’s wake. It literally looked like God had sprinkled diamonds in the water. When we got back to shore we loaded up the bus and headed back home! Today was a really awesome time of ministry and we really got the see the Holy Spirit move through us! Tomorrow we get to sleep in a bit! But we are heading out for church at 9am and then doing more street dramas in the downtown area. And we will also get a chance to shop tomorrow, yay! Thank you all for the prayers we are all healthy and happy and getting to witness God do some amazing things.

So after 2 long sleepless flights we finally made it to El Salvador yesterday, and got our first night´s rest last night. But not before we got a good night of ministry in first!  We got off the plane and waited for our luggage which was, of course, the last bags off the plane. Then we hoped on a bus to our very nice hotel. On the bus we got the low down on what we would be doing this week, and we learned something that everybody had failed to mention up to this point. You cannot flush toilet paper in El Salvador. That has been fun! Well we got all checked in, changed and hit the streets, we were all running on zero sleep.  But as soon as we got to the park and started practicing our dramas we all woke right back up. That night we performed for an audience of about 50 and we saw 28 salvations! It was amazing and definitely has set the tenor and our expectations for the rest of the trip. But we were all very glad to get back to the hotel and get some sleep and take a shower. This morning  we woke up bright and early at 6am and had breakfast and were out of the hotel by 8. We drove 2 hrs to the neighborhood we would be ministering in. We performed our first set of dramas outside at an elementary school, and the kids were so darn cute we probably stayed a little longer than we were supposed to. But we finally hoped back on the bus and headed to a different neighborhood. Now I should mention that El Salvador went through a 12 year civil war as you may know, and many from the communist party had settled into this neighborhood. David Blanchard said there was a huge spiritual battle going on there, and we definitely saw evidence of that! Our first set of dramas in that neighborhood went really well. We split up into groups and went out into the neighborhood to invite people to come see our dramas. I don’t know the statistics of salvations but they will tell us tomorrow i’m sure. So we went to our final destination, a crusade, just as it started raining. So we gathered up all the chairs and moved inside. We started with worship and then we performed our drama bondage. After our drama Ivy got up and gave her testimony. And right in the middle of her testimony a demon possessed woman stood up in the crowd and was fight and trying to leave the church. The men around her had to hold her and she was prayed for until the demon was cast out! Before she couldn’t even say the name Jesus but we saw her accept Christ tonight! Later at the altar call another demon possessed man came up, and we saw him delivered also. We then prayed for healing and all of us got to lay hands on people. At the end of the crusade they handed out bags of rice to everyone who attended so we had to stay inside until everyone had left because the doors were so packed with people we couldn’t get out. By the time we got out it was pouring down with rain. We headed to dinner, which tonight was Pollo Campero! Its just like KFC, we’ve had a true El Salvador fast food experience. Last night dinner was Burger King. Well we get back at the hotel around 9pm every night and the one hotel computer is usually occupied so I will try to keep you updated as much as possible but our days are pretty jammed packed. Tomorrow we will be heading off to an island fondly known as Cannibal Island, but don’t worry they stopped eating people there about a hundred years ago! So thanks for all your prays, I know we all miss everyone back home but are having an awesome time! And don’t worry Mrs. Budd Elissa is wearing her sunscreen! Love you guys!

They’re Off!

July 17, 2008

Last night at Catalyst, P. Aaron had the team come forward and had all of Catalyst come up and lay their hands on the team. It was a truly powerful moment! We are all believing God that He is going to take His power and presence that He demonstrates every week at Catalyst and take that to El Salvador… PRAY FOR THEM!!!!

Here are some pics of the departure. Thanks to Chuck Larrison for driving a bunch of the team out to the airport!

Good luck Bryan. That is a lot of girls, dude. We will pray for you!

Da Malones!

Hello world!

July 13, 2008

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